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There is Nothing Quite Like The Mask of Orpheus at the London ...

Sam Smith

This autumn English National Opera is exploring the Orpheus myth by presenting four operatic takes on it. Now, following Gluck’s Orpheus and Eurydice and Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld, both of which still have performances that can be seen, comes the third addition to the mix, Harrison Birtwistle’s The Mask of Orpheus. Without a doubt there is no other opera quite like it with the orchestra containing no strings, the score including electronic music (which was...


Wexford Opera Festival: Felicien David Herculanum

Helmut Pitsch

Félicien David is a French composer of the 19th century, whose works have totally ceased away from the standard concert or opera programmes and even his existence is unknown to a wide number of music lovers. Born in 1810 in Southern France, his musical talent was noticed early and supported. His career ended quickly once he joined the Saint Simonians. Later in his life, he gained back some reputation and contributed one major work to the genre "grand opera", Herculanum, a...